28 Jan. 2024
Three European teams joined the party for the 2025 IHF Men’s World Championship after the conclusion of the Men’s EHF EURO 2024, as France, Germany and Sweden secured their tickets to the world handball flagship competition, putting the total of qualified teams from Europe to six, alongside co-hosts Croatia, Denmark and Norway.
A total of 11 European teams will also secure tickets to Croatia/Denmark/Norway 2025 via the Qualification Europe play-offs, with the draw for Part 2 of said qualifiers taking place on Saturday, 27 January, in Cologne, on the outskirts of the final weekend of the EHF EURO 2024.
22 teams will enter the fray for the Qualification Europe Phase 2 – Part 2, with four teams coming from Qualification Phase 2 - Part 1, where four doubleheaders are scheduled on 13 and 16 March. Belgium face Italy, Estonia will take on Ukraine, Slovakia meet Israel, while Finland lock horns with Lithuania, in what promises to be a well-balanced part of the European qualifiers.
The draw for the Qualification Europe Phase 2 – Part 2 for the 2025 IHF Men’s World Championship provides some fiery clashes, with powerhouses facing off for a place at Croatia/Denmark/Norway 2025.
None of the battles promises more drama than the one between Spain and Serbia, with the two sides coming off disappointing performances at the EHF EURO 2024. Spain were eliminated from the preliminary round and finished on the 13th place, while Serbia finished on the 19th place, finishing without a win from a tough group in the preliminary round.
Another well-balanced tie will be the one between Slovenia and Switzerland, as Slovenia finished on the sixth place at the EHF EURO 2024, while Switzerland held the eventual champions, France, to a draw in the preliminary round, 26:26.
The Faroe Islands will be looking to deliver their maiden berth for the IHF Men’s World Championship, after impressing at the EHF EURO 2024 and at the 2023 IHF Men’s Junior and IHF Men’s Youth World Championship editions, but they will face an experienced North Macedonia side, led by Kiril Lazarov.
Portugal, which will be facing Bosnia Herzegovina, Iceland, facing the winner between Estonia and Ukraine and Hungary, which are due to meet the winner between Finland and Lithuania are also big favourites to seal their tickets for Croatia/Denmark/Norway 2025.
Czechia are due to meet Romania, which are looking for their maiden World Championship berth since 2011, while two of the surprises of the EHF EURO 2024, Austria and Georgia are also facing off, with Austria aiming to return to the world handball flagship competition after missing out in 2023.
The two legs of the Qualification Europe Phase 2 – Part 2 are scheduled for 8 and 13 May.
2025 IHF Men’s World Championship Qualification Europe play-offs, phase 2:
Winner of Finland/Lithuania vs Hungary
Winner of Belgium/Italy vs Montenegro
Greece vs Netherlands
Romania vs Czechia
Spain vs Serbia
Faroe Islands vs North Macedonia
Slovenia vs Switzerland
Portugal vs Bosnia and Herzegovina
Iceland vs winner of Estonia/Ukraine
Poland vs winner of Slovakia/Israel
Georgia vs Austria